The most up-to-date content on the planet
this just in
 RSS
WEEI » This Just In » Lucchino on D&C: 'Myriad changes' for Sox
Fri, 10/05/2012 - 9:16am  

Lucchino on D&C: 'Myriad changes' for Sox

Red Sox president/CEO Larry Lucchino joined Dennis & Callahan on Friday morning to talk about the team's disastrous 2012 season and the decision to fire Bobby Valentine.

"If this is broken, as indeed it is, we're determined to make it right and get back to the success that we've had in our first decade," Lucchino said.

Lucchino described the Thursday morning meeting where Valentine was given the news that he would not be returning for a second season. Lucchino clarified that it was not a breakfast meeting, as had been previously reported, but a mid-morning meeting at Lucchino's house.

"It started with a statement from Ben about the decision that had just been made," Lucchino said. "And then Bobby took it with great grace and professionalism, I must say. I've had the misfortune of being involved in these kinds of decisions from time to time over my 30 years of baseball, and he was exceptional in his grace and constructive comments. … As to whether he anticipated what was going to happen, you'd have to speak to him. We didn't ask him that question. But he certainly, as I said a minute ago, accepted the decision with grace and recognition."

While there were numerous reports of clubhouse problems during the season, Lucchino said the main reason for this decision is the team's lack of success.

"I find it awkward and probably a little inappropriate to go into 'Who shot John?' and what went right and what went wrong," Lucchino said. "I think what's easier to discuss is the record. If we were 93-69 instead of 69-93, we wouldn't be having this conversation. We're in a results-oriented business, and the results did not occur. We have high levels of expectations here in Boston, and I think rightfully so, and we did not perform. And Bobby understood it in those terms. He basically did [say], 'My job is to put together a winning team, to deal with the problems that emerge during the course of a tumultuous season and ensure that the team wins as it's expected to do.' And that didn't happen. So he recognized that the bottom line was indeed the bottom line."

There has been widespread speculation that the front office hurt Valentine's ability to run the team by failing to back him when players complained. Luchino insisted Valentine was able to be himself and had the support of his bosses.

"I think he was Bobby V. I think he wanted to be a little careful at the beginning because he stepped into such a difficult situation following the historic collapse last September. That may have urged him to be a little more careful because the situation was so volatile," Lucchino said. "But by and large I believe he felt that he had our support from the beginning. And throughout, we made it clear, publicly and privately, that when a situation was called into question that we were going to deal with the manager issue at the conclusion of the season and not until the conclusion of the season.

"From my point of view, he had my support. Certainly, I was an early advocate for him last offseason. And as he leaves the manager's office today I remain a supporter, someone who sees terrific things in Bobby Valentine, both personally and professionally."

One of the reported instances of front office interference came when Valentine allegedly was admonished for berating a player during spring training.

"No, he was not admonished," Lucchino said, adding: "Some [players] may have thought it was an unusual way to deal with it. But that whole issue [during an early season game] with Will Middlebrooks, I think Bobby handled just fine."

Looking at this year's managerial search as compared to last year's, Lucchino said the key differences are that the team is opening the search earlier and rookie general manager Ben Cherington now has the experience of having gone through the process once already. He also indicated that the shakeup around the team will continue.

"We do think that there are some things that need to be done besides this. This is not the only change that's going to made this offseason," Lucchino said. "There are myriad changes that will be made. We've begun with the megatrade with the Dodgers, with the addition of Jason Varitek, with the supplement to our evaluation process with Eddie Bane, now with the managerial change, there'll be some coaching changes. There will be a host of changes. And there will be some new personnel.

"We believe we have a core of good players, a core of really positive, exciting, hard-nosed players that our fans can embrace. I'm talking about Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury and David Ortiz and Will Middlebrooks, and I could go on and on. There's a core of good players there. But we've got to supplement them, we've got to use free agency, we've got to trade, we've got to do what we can to add to this team to make it stronger and let's hope make it healthier."

Following are more highlights from the interview.

On if the players have a say in who will be hired: "We will talk to our players, of course, the more input we get from players on things, the better. But they do not have a vote in this process. This is not a referendum of players who will tell us who they next manager should be. That, I think, is misguided."

On reports that last offseason the players were told the team would not hire a confrontational manager like Bobby Valentine: "I have no personal knowledge of that. I've heard the same story, that Theo Epstein -- I believe it was, at least that's the story that I've heard -- made that comment while he was here as general manager. But of course the decision was made later than that, after Theo was gone. So, I don't know if he indeed did say something like that or not. You'd probably have to ask him."

On if the team should have reconsidered retaining Terry Francona last year: "I don't want to open old issues except to say Terry was not an option. He told us he was not prepared to manage again in 2012, and we took him at his word. So, no, that alternative was never considered or explored."

On accountability for the struggles this season: "The lack of success that we endured during this terrible 2012 season is a responsibility that's shared by a lot of us, including yours truly, including Ben Cherington and our baseball operations department, including John Henry and Tom Werner representing our ownership. There were enough misjudgments and problems that developed that there's plenty of accountability to pass around."

To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page. For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox.




Audio On Demand

Mike Reiss with Dale, Hol…

Mike Reiss with Dale, Holley and Thornton

Dale, Michael and Jerry dig into the details of this draft for the Patriots with ESPN's Mike Reiss.

NFL SUNDAY with Mike Giardi and Chris Price -- Roger Goodell is maddening! -- 5-1-16

Giardi and Price discuss the Tom Brady appeal getting overturned and Roger Goodell's victory tour. The guys can't believe the victory lap and some of his behavior. The more you listen to him, the more frustrating his behavior becomes.

NFL SUNDAY with Mike Giardi and Chris Price -- A look at the AFC East post NFL Draft -- 5-1-16

Giardi and Price break down how the teams in the AFC East altered their futures after the NFL Draft weekend.

Jeff Goodman, ESPN, joins…

Jeff Goodman, ESPN, joins Giardi and Bradford to preview the NBA Draft and the future of the Celtics - "They're looking to get a starter this year, a starter in next year's draft and possibly a free agent starter...Kevin Durant is not coming here." ...

Jeff Goodman calls Mike and Rob to drop a ton of knowledge on the upcoming NBA Draft and some of the names available. Sorry fans - he doesn't see Kevin Durant or any big-named free agents coming to Boston and thinks they'll end up making the third pick this season. He also says that there is NO WAY he would trade next year's Brooklyn pick because the draft will be very deep. He discusses the chances of trading with Philly for Okafor, why he like Kris Dunn so much and much more.

Head Coach Brad Stevens with Dale and Holley

Brad Stevens makes his first appearance on the Dale and Holley with Thornton show. We discuss the Atlanta series and what went wrong, and where the Celtics go from here.

WEEI Celtics Podcast - NBA.com's Ian Thomsen on Spurs-Thunder Ending, Danny Ainge's next move for Celtics 5/3

Ian Thomsen of NBA.com joined Sam Packard and Jared Weiss to discuss the next moves for Danny Ainge and the Boston Celtics with the NBA Draft Lottery rapidly approaching. They discussed the crazy ending to Game 2 of Thunder vs Spurs and picked the player they would build their pretend new franchise around.

Red Sox Review with Danny…

Red Sox Review with Danny Picard, 5-29-16

Danny Picard recaps the Red Sox 5-3 win over the Blue Jays.

5-28 Danny Picard - Red Sox Review

Who is to blame for the Red Sox 10-9 loss to the Blue Jays? Danny points the finger.

Tim Neverett talks with John Farrell on Clay Buchholz move to the bullpen

Tim talks with Red Sox manager John Farrell before the Red Sox game against the Blue Jays. John talks about Clay Buchholz move to the bullpen and adjustments he expects him to have to make going from the starter to the bullpen.

SUNDAY SKATE with DJ Bean…

SUNDAY SKATE with DJ Bean and Pete Blackburn -- A look toward the future for the Bruins -- 4-17-16

DJ and Pete continue to assess the season that was for the Bruins and look toward the future for the franchise and how they can improve.

SUNDAY SKATE with WEEI's DJ Bean and Uproxx's Pete Blackburn -- They got what they wanted...Claude Julien is staying in Boston -- 4-17-16

DJ and Pete are together for the final Sunday Skate of the season. They get into their overall thoughts on the season, the Bruins keeping Claude Julien on as head coach and the end-of-season press conferences last week. They discuss the rebuild process, what the Bruins need and how they can obtain it. Plenty of callers have their own theories and opinions on all of these topics as well.

Butch Stearns with DJ Bean and Pete Blackburn -- The season is officially over for the Bruins; where do we go from here? -- 4-10-16

Butch is joined by two-thirds of the Sunday Skate show in DJ and Pete. The guys discuss the problems with Bruins including leadership and grit, who should stay and who should go and if Claude is to blame.

D&C w/ Mut Butch & Meter …

D&C w/ Mut Butch & Meter - Will Malcolm Butler hold out? Is he more valuable than Jamie Collins or Dont'a Hightower? 5-30-16

Mike Mutnansky, Butch Stearns, and Jon Meterparel discuss the absence of Malcolm Butler at last week's OTAs and replay a sound byte of Butler from May 21st on WEEI not wanting to discuss his contract. Is Malcolm Butler headed for a contract dispute, and how valuable is he?

D&C w/ Mut, Butch & Meter - Do Kevin Durant's struggles in Games 5 & 6 change your opinion of him? 5-30-16

Mike Mutnansky, Jon Meterparel and Butch Stearns discuss the Celtics and their level of interest in Kevin Durant after Oklahoma City's losses in games five and six; also what should the Celtics do with the third pick in the draft coming up in June?

D&C w/ Mut & Meter - Headlines, Headlines, Headlines with Robert Kraft, Julian Edelman, and Johnny Depp in the news 5-30-16

Jon Meterparel handles Kirk Minhane's Headlines segment with sound from Robert Kraft at a Jewish University's commencement speech, Julian Edelman screaming 'Free Brady', and Johnny Depp in trouble with his ex Amanda Heard

The Patriots have to star…

The Patriots have to start making decisions on their young defensive players 5-30-16

With Malcolm Butler, Dont'a Hightower and Jamie Collins all emerging as stars, it's time for the Patriots to decide who they need to make a priority. Giardi and Bradford give their take on who should be the first to resign.

Is the NBA growing and MLB dying? 5-30-16

Giardi and Bradford debate why kids are more into the NBA and will be watching the Golden State vs. OKC game 7 tonight, and why no young fans will watch a neutral baseball game.

Bradford shuts down the rumors...he DOES want Kevin Durant in Boston 5-30-16

Mike Giardi and rob Bradford were in on Memorial Day and Bradford had a problem with how Mut, Meter and Butch took his comments out of context on the morning show. Also, Giardi and Bradford talk about what it would take to get Kevin Durant in Boston.

Laroy Streat's Freestyle …

Laroy Streat's Freestyle Friday via the Dale & Holley Show

Laroy Streat keeps setting fire to the airways and talks people singing his Freestyle Fridays to him when they see him on the street! Catch our guy every friday via final drive! He's must listen radio!

Dale and Holley's Final Drive Including Laroy's Freestyle Friday 5/27/16

We end the week with the best in sound Laroy Streat continues to set fire to the airways with his music.

Dale and Holley's Freestyle Friday Hour 2 - Red Sox Pitching and Triple A.

The guys talk Red Sox pitching and the problems that could arise with Buchholz struggles.

Red Sox Review with Danny…

Red Sox Review with Danny Picard, 5-29-16

Danny Picard recaps the Red Sox 5-3 win over the Blue Jays.

Red Sox Review with Mut, 5-26-16

Mut recaps the Sox 8-2 loss to the Rockies.

Red Sox Review with Mut, 5-25-16

Mut recaps the Sox 10-3 win over the Rockies.

Unsportsmanlike Podcast -…

Unsportsmanlike Podcast - Graig Murphy 2

Jerry is joined by Graig Murphy to talk stand up comedy. Until Graig pretty much hijacks the podcast to tell his side of the "Big Show Unfiltered" story.

SoccerCast - Champions League Final Preview

Ben and Russ preview the Champions League Final between Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid. Who we want to win, who we think will win, and why. We also talk about our wishes for the USMNT.

Enough About Me - Ep. 15: Pete Sheppard

The Dennis and Callahan malcontent is joined by former WEEI personality Pete Sheppard to talk about his past involvement with the station and his current gig in New Hampshire. You'll be glad to hear Pete hasn't changed one bit.

Lucy goes after Dino, 5-2…

Lucy goes after Dino, 5-27-16

Lucy's parting shot after not taking the job is to attack Dino for how he treats producers.

More from this show

Ep. 15: Pete Sheppard

Ep. 15: Pete Sheppard

The Dennis and Callahan malcontent is joined by former WEEI personality Pete Sheppard to talk about his past involvement with the station and his current gig in New Hampshire. You'll be glad to hear Pete hasn't changed one bit.

More from this show

OMF, Whiner Line 5/27

OMF, Whiner Line 5/27

No one is safe from OMF's Whiner Line.

More from this show

Giardi and Bradford discu…

Giardi and Bradford discuss the Patriots and if anything significant can be learned from OTAs? -- 5-29-16

Mike and Rob discuss how OTAs are not the forum to make decisions on the future of the team and how fans on Twitter can't accept that. They also get into the contract situations for Malcolm Butler and Dont'a Hightower.

More from this show

Mustard & Johnson - GO PA…

Mustard & Johnson - GO PATRIOTS! You won't like him when he's angry

Deflategate rage explodes on the guys. They argue whether Brady is dragging it out or he should defend his innocence and the callers get in on the action.

More from this show

News & Analysis